Members of the current roster of Wuthering Waves
Image via Kuro Game

Wuthering Waves vs Genshin Impact: Biggest Gacha Game Differences

There are some significant differences between Wuthering Waves and other big gacha games.

The David vs. Goliath gacha wars roll on, with the new Wuthering Waves taking on Genshin Impact with developer Kuro Game adding its trademark focus on execution and skill mixed with the open world formula the reigning gacha king popularized. Despite some major similarities, there are bosm big differences between Wuthering Waves and Genshin, and we’ll talk about them today.

Recommended Videos

Wuthering Waves vs Genshin Impact: Biggest Differences

The Combat Difference

Jiyan in Wuthering Waves
Image via Kuro Game

The main differentiator between Wuthering Waves and other action gachas is the incredibly execution-heavy combat. Much like its other game, Punishing: Gray Raven, Kuro Game put a lot of effort into making its combat have a high skill ceiling. Where player skill expression in a game like Genshin Impact centers around building your characters and executing their attack and ability rotations, Wuthering Waves puts more emphasis on moment-to-moment fights.

Knowing how to effectively parry, dodge, animation cancel, and correctly time attacks is paramount to winning fights. You’ll be punished for spamming attacks, for poor dodge and parry timing, and for not completing your character rotations properly. There are characters in the launch roster, like Jianxin, who focus on parries and stances, forcing you to either learn or get your face caved in.

That’s saying nothing of using the most complex characters in the game. While the launch roster is healthy for a game just getting started, there are still characters that get technical very quickly, whether their kit requires precision or lots of fast inputs like Calcharo, or the character is inherently risky to play. For another Genshin comparison, think of Risk in Wuthering Waves, like playing Arlecchino in the hardest endgame content. You’re one wrong move away from death.

Combat difficulty also scales a bit differently. Where in other action gachas, the main tuning that makes a fight harder is “more health, more damage,” in Wuthering Waves, enemies get those and new attacks, attack patterns, and behaviors. The higher up the difficulty curve you climb, the more complex boss encounters become. However, you aren’t necessarily gear-locked out of the hardest fights. If you know them well and can play well, you can beat the hardest bosses even at 40 levels below them. One misstep will end a run, sure, but fighting flawlessly will still win you the day.

The Generosity Difference

Jianxin in Wuthering Waves
Image via Kuro Game

Wuthering Waves might be a gacha game, so it’s always out for your money, but it’s also fairly generous with its gacha mechanics, especially for new players. The main difference here is in the weapon banner. If you’re familiar with Genshin, you might know how BS that game’s weapon banner is, even with the “greater” chance of getting what you want. Well, in Wuthering Waves, if you pull on either the limited or standard weapon banners, the weapon you want is the weapon you get.

Pity is also a bit more forgiving. Many gachas put their hard pity at 90 pulls, or 14,400 units of premium currency spent. Wuthering Waves‘ pity is set at 80, giving you an additional 1,600 Asterite (the currency here) to put away for later. If you join during the launch period, you also have a chance at over 100 pulls, completely free. You do have to play the game quite a bit to get all of them, but reach specific milestones and log in enough, and you don’t need to spend a cent or collect a single world chest for an effectively guaranteed 5-star something or other.

Play enough, and you’ll also get a free 5-star weapon of your choice, plus a guaranteed 5-star character banner after you finish pulling on the discounted beginner banner. There are about 250 additional pulls available if you complete every single bit of content in the launch game, according to calculations done by YouTuber iamrivenous. Said calculations were done during the Closed Beta Test 2, so they do not include the new region announced during the recent livestreams.

In other words, you have the opportunity to earn more than enough pulls to guarantee both the standard character you want as well as at least one limited event character, even if you lose your 50/50.

The Echo Difference

Verina in Wuthering Waves
Image via Kuro Game

Echoes are the Relic and Artifact equivalent in Wuthering Waves, but unlike those more static items in Star Rail and Genshin, to get Echoes, you need to defeat monsters out in the world. Doing so offers a chance for them to drop their Echo, allowing you to equip them for stat boosts and summon them in battle to help. World bosses also drop Echoes and are farmable, provided you have the Stamina to do so.

Echoes are otherwise very similar to the equippable gear in other gachas. They come in five rarities, and those rarities determine how many stat boots they can have and how strong they are. You can upgrade Echoes using the same systems you’re familiar with, and generally, the stats you want on a DPS in Genshin are the ones you want in Wuthering Waves.

The ability to summon your Echoes is interesting, as it adds yet another layer of complexity to combat. Not only do you need to keep your character’s abilities in mind on top of attack, parry, dodge, and rotation timings, but now you need to figure out which Echoes to use and when. Making things harder still, the 5-star rarity Echo you need might come from a particularly annoying world boss fight, forcing you to grind an encounter you don’t like for the privilege of using that boss in battle.

Of course, the Echo system feeds directly into the combat system because so long as you are efficient at defeating enemies, no matter how low a level you are, you have a chance at top-tier rewards long before you’d otherwise be able to get them in other games.

The Botton Line

There are tons of other, slightly smaller differences between Wuthering Waves and other gacha games like it, whether it’s additional reward systems, how it’s a three-character game, or its expanded ability selections. The long and the short of it is that Wuthering Waves is enough of its own thing to stand apart from its influences while still maintaining many of the traits gacha gamers love about the genre. Stay tuned to our Wuthering Waves guide hub for more content like this.

GameSkinny is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more about our Affiliate Policy
Image of John Schutt
John Schutt
John Schutt has been playing games for almost 25 years, starting with Super Mario 64 and progressing to every genre under the sun. He spent almost 4 years writing for strategy and satire site TopTierTactics under the moniker Xiant, and somehow managed to find time to get an MFA in Creative Writing in between all the gaming. His specialty is action games, but his first love will always be the RPG. Oh, and his avatar is, was, and will always be a squirrel, a trend he's carried as long as he's had a Steam account, and for some time before that.